Happy Father’s Day!

Wishing all you dads out there a wonderful Father’s Day! Among the many virtues of this day is the opportunity I get to post this great pic once again. It’s Timothy, his wife Doris and their six young’uns, from the early 1970s. It accompanied the article “Timothy Carey: The World’s Greatest Director!” by Harvey F. Chartrand in Filmfax Plus magazine #102 (April/June 2004).

From the Filmfax Plus #102 articleHappy day, dads, fathers and father figures!

Eli Wallach 1915 – 2014

Carey’s final project as a film director is Godfarter III (1989), an audition piece for [Francis Ford] Coppola, who was looking to cast the role of an elderly Mafia don for The Godfather: Part III (1990). Coppola considered Carey too young for the part (and may also have been put off by Carey’s earlier eccentricities on The Godfather). Carey tried to convince the director that he could tackle the role of Don Altobello, but it wasn’t meant to be, and Eli Wallach was eventually cast in the part.

– Harvey F. Chartrand, “Timothy Carey, The World’s Greatest Director!”; Filmfax Plus #102 (April/June 2004)

Eli Wallach as Don Altobello, The Godfather: Part III (1990)

Timothy as Don Altobello, Godfarter III

Quote of the Week

FAX: Is a cult forming around Timothy Carey?

CAREY: Oh yes, there is no doubt about that. I get e-mail from around the world from people who are just now discovering him. My dad was always pretty famous. As kids, we couldn’t go anywhere with him that he wouldn’t be recognized. He is remembered because he was a great actor who appeared in some landmark films, like Paths of Glory and The Killing. He made his own films, which influenced other independent filmmakers. It all comes down to originality. Someone as iconoclastic as my father resonates down the generations. It’s a mystery why he is becoming more popular since his death, but I think there’s a whole pirated underground of [The World’s Greatest] Sinner tapes out there. There are regular screenings of Sinner in Brooklyn that attract a thousand people per screening. There are Tim Carey film festivals in Chicago, San Francisco, even Australia! For a guy who did what he did in his little way, it’s pretty impressive. It just goes to show, if you put the right kind of energy into something, it doesn’t go away.

Romeo Carey, “Carrying On in the Family Tradition”, interview by Harvey F. Chartrand; Filmfax Plus #102 (April/June 2004)

From the Filmfax Plus #102 article

Happy Father’s Day!

Pics of the Day: “The Killing” and “Paths of Glory” revisited

Today, the fifteenth anniversary of the death of Stanley Kubrick, we pay tribute to him by revisiting the two films of his in which Timothy appears. First up is The Killing (1956), in which hipster sharpshooter Nikki Arcane assassinates a racehorse as part of an intricate racetrack robbery scheme.

The Killing

Secondly, and finally, doomed French World War I soldier Pvt. Maurice Ferol is unjustly court-martialed for desertion in Paths of Glory (1957).

Paths of Glory

In an unpublished 2003 interview with Harvey Chartrand, Tim’s younger brother George sheds an interesting light on Tim’s relationship with Kubrick:

One day, Timmy was out in the backyard, brushing his horse, and I got a call from Stanley Kubrick, who was on the set of Spartacus. Timmy says, “You talk to him, George. Tell him I’ll be right there.” So I made small talk with Kubrick, figuring that Timmy was on his way from the backyard to take the phone call. I don’t know what the call was about, because Timmy wasn’t in Spartacus. Well, Timmy never got to the phone. He stayed out there, brushing his horse. I don’t know what that was all about. Timmy was a little erratic at times. I think if Timmy hadn’t been quite so extreme in some of his efforts to get publicity for himself, he would have been in other Kubrick pictures after Paths of Glory. (Carey was later considered for a small part in Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey.)

We can only dream about the work Tim and Kubrick might have accomplished together in later years, and about further Kubrick projects had he lived longer to share his gifts with us. For now, let’s just be grateful these two eccentric storytelling geniuses got a chance to work together at all. We are the fortunate beneficiaries of their collaborations.

Happy Father’s Day!

Wishing all you dads out there a wonderful Father’s Day! Among the many virtues of this day is the opportunity I get to post this great pic once again. It’s Timothy, his wife Doris and their six young’uns, from the early 1970s. It accompanied the article “Timothy Carey: The World’s Greatest Director!” by Harvey F. Chartrand in Filmfax Plus magazine #102 (April/June 2004).

From the Filmfax Plus #102 article

Have a great day, dads!

Quote of the Week

“My personal opinion is that [The World’s Greatest] Sinner is very unusual,” [Gil] Barreto observes. “Nobody else but Tim would have dared to make a movie like that. Very controversial, especially when Tim pierces the host (to make God cry out in pain and reveal Himself). Tim’s acting was good, but it was very strange.”

Carey changed during the filming, Barreto reports, truly becoming the character he was portraying. Clarence Hilliard starts out sweet and loving and becomes a wicked man. Barreto recalls, “At first, I only had a few lines, but Tim was so nasty to the bit players that they started quitting the picture. As they disappeared, Tim kept giving me their lines, until I had a big supporting role. Tim became God Hilliard, and we really had God in person on the set. It was very difficult to be with Tim at times.”

Nothing would deflect Carey from bringing his vision to the screen. The result is there for all to see: a crazed B-movie, insane, disturbing, and provocative, fueled by rage and passion.

– Harvey F. Chartrand, “Timothy Carey: The World’s Greatest Director!”, Filmfax Plus magazine #102 (April/June 2004)

photo from Film Comment

 

Quote of the Week

PENNY BLOOD: How did you manage to direct a peculiar talent like Timothy Carey in What’s the Matter with Helen? (1971) and in “Set Up City,” a 1975 episode of Baretta?
 
HARRINGTON: I’m in that little club that includes Stanley Kubrick and John Cassavetes: directors who admired Timothy Carey for his uniqueness. The thing about Timothy was that he was as eccentric offscreen as on. That eccentricity is what we all loved, but it was not entirely controllable. Producers did not like to work with Timothy because he never did two takes the same way. The only way I got him on “Set Up City” was because the star of the show, Bobby Blake, gave his approval. But I adored Timothy Carey and was very happy to have him play a tramp in What’s the Matter with Helen? and a criminal in “Set Up City.” He was very inventive. He would ad-lib extra lines. Some of them were so funny that I would burst out laughing in the middle of a take. Of course, my laugh was on the soundtrack so we’d have to do another take, which was kind of embarrassing.
 
There’s a scene in “Set Up City” where Timothy roughs up a used car salesman. Timothy was a bit out of control because he really hurt the other actor who later sued through the Screen Actors’ Guild. When I first met Timothy, I was terrified of him. I couldn’t imagine that I’d ever work with him. But he knew who I was. One day I ran into him on the Fox lot and he hugged me and said: “Oh Curtis, you are the greatest, man! You’re the best!” I realized that he really liked me and I had nothing to fear. (Laughs) So I took him into my heart.
 
Curtis Harrington, from “Curtis Harrington: The Bitter With the Sweet,” interview by Harvey F. Chartrand, Penny Blood magazine, issue 7 (March/April/May 2007)
 
Set Up City - 1975Timothy gives the business to Larry D. Mann (the voice of Yukon Cornelius!) in “Set Up City” (10.29.75)